- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 2, 2014

An Iraq veteran who was being diagnosed for mental issues killed three people and then himself in another shooting rampage at the same Texas Army base where 13 people were killed in a  2009 murder spree.

Three soldiers were killed and 16 others injured, according to Lt. Gen. Mark Milley in a press conference Wednesday night.

The gunman used a 45-caliber Smith and Wesson semi-automatic gun to carry out the assault, and then later turned the gun on himself after being pursued by a female law enforcement officer in a parking lot.

The shooter’s gun was recently purchased and not registered on the Army base, according to Gen. Milley.

The Army has decided not to release the soldier’s name at this time, but Rep. Michael McCaul, Texas Republican and chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security, identified the gunman as Spc. Ivan Lopez as did several news outlets.

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No victims were officially identified either.

No motive is known, but Gen. Milley said the gunman was on medication, “had behavior and mental-health issues and was being treated” for depression, anxiety and related matters.

The commanding general said the attacker had not been diagnosed as suffering from PTSD though he was in the process of being diagnosed. He had served four months in Iraq in 2011 and arrived at Fort Hood in February.

The gunman had self-reported “a traumatic brain injury” from Iraq, Gen. Milley said, though he added that the gunman was not considered as having been “wounded in action” and had not received the customary Purple Heart.

Department of Defense officials are working with the FBI to comb through all social media, including Facebook and Twitter to look for any potential leads, he said.

There is “no indication this incident is related to terrorism, although we’re not ruling it out,” Gen. Milley said.

According to Rep. John Carter, Texas Republican and chairman of the Homeland Security appropriations subcommittee, the gunman worked at Fort Hood as a truck driver.

Gen. Milley said the gunman went to one building and fired, drove to another while firing and being fired upon, then went to another building and fired on people again, before being confronted in a parking lot by Fort Hood military police.

In that confrontation, a female officer brandished her weapon at him, the killer put up his hands, reached inside his clothes to pull out his gun and shot himself in the head.

The whole series of attacks lasted 10-15 minutes, the general estimated. The base remained on lockdown until just before 10 p.m. EDT, more than five hours after the first shots were fired.

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